Estes Park Shuttle Service

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The other day I shared with ya’ll how Estes has a free shuttle services that go to various locations around town. I wanted to go into more detail about it. It’s such a great service.

The shuttle service offers six different routes known as loops. Each one is denoted by color, with the exception of the one that goes into RMNP.

 

All six shuttles stop at the Estes Park Visitors Center. This allows you to park without having to mess with downtown traffic. Besides the visitors center is a great place to stop in any way.

Estes Shuttle map

 

The first loop is known as the Silver Loop, this shuttle will take you into the non tourist part of town. It does stop at a few hotels and resorts. It also stops at the Estes Park Museum as well as the fairgrounds. Most major events are held at the fairgrounds, so this is a great stop.

Silver Shuttle 2

 

The next loop is the Gold Star or Gold Loop. This loop is strictly downtown. There are several stops along Elk Horn Avenue, which is where all the shops are. If you never use any of the other shuttles, use this one. It’ll save you time and aggravation. Parking in downtown Estes is terrible and pedestrians will run out in front of you. Another great feature of the Gold Star Loop is that you ride on a trolley as opposed to a minibus. I wish I’d taken a picture of the inside, it still has the classic park bench style seats.

Gold Star

 

The third loop is the Blue Loop, this route takes you to the lodging on the Eastside of town. This includes the lower level of Stanley Village, up a short hill is a grocery store, making this loop super convenient if you’re staying at the KOA, as it stops there as well. The views aren’t anything to write home about. However; again it’ll save you a lot of aggravation if you catch the shuttle into town.

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The fourth loop is the Red Loop, this loop goes up Fall River Road. It’s stops are dispersed at the various lodgings along the road. This includes the restaurant Northwest of our hotel that we would get on and off at. Another stop this shuttle made was the Fall River Road RMNP Visitor’s Center. It’s definitely worth stopping in for a visit, there’s even a cafe.

Red Loop

 

The final around town loop is the Brown Loop. This loop takes to you to most of the RV Parks that are in Estes, as well as one of the other grocery stores. Another stop it makes is the YMCA of the Rockies, which is where most of the large groups stay. It too stops at another RMNP   visitor’s center.

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The final shuttle is the Hiker’s Shuttle. This is the only shuttle that actually takes you into RMNP. Keep in mind if you want to get into the park it’s $25 for a week-long access pass. But the shuttle will drop you off at the trail heads to some of the main trails. This I believe includes Longs Peak. But I’m not 100% sure.

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Keep in mind the shuttles may not always stop exactly were you want to be, but you can usually get in walking distance of it. Anyway, I hope this helps you out if you ever make the trip to Estes Park, Co.

Pulling Up

 

For more detailed information about the shuttle services you can check out the official website. Estes Park Shuttle Service

Estes Park, Last Day

Well, today was our last day of vacation. Tomorrow night I’ll be sitting in a hotel in Dodge City, Ks. So, this is my last night to sit and listen to the river while I write. Today was a great last day, despite the fact that it rained most of the afternoon. We’d done all our walking stuff the last few days and this morning so the rain didn’t matter to us.

We did so much today I am having a hard time deciding where to start. If I start rambling, I apologize in advance. I guess I’ll start off with the fact that I bought something that I hope will make this blog better. I’m always thinking of thinks I’d like to share with ya’ll when I’m not around a computer. The problem is, by the time I am around a computer and can write a post, I’ve forgotten whatever it was I wanted to share. So, I bought a notebook just for making notes for the blog. I took a bunch of notes today, that’s why I’m not sure where to start. Hmmm, maybe I’ve created a completely separate problem. Well, crap.

Yesterday, quite by accident we discovered that there is a brewery in town. I’m not sure how I missed it, we found it when my aunt missed the turn for the aerial tram. We are huge fans of micro brews. We were unable to do a tasting, but I did buy a six pack at a local store. Their Park Gold, which is an amber ale is absolutely amazing. When I called Husby tonight to tell him about it he wanted me to go buy more to bring home. We made it to the liquor store about 10 minutes ’til closing time. I bought another six pack of Park Gold. I also bought a six pack of their Stinger Wild Honey Wheat and one of their Longs Peak Raspberry Wheat. I haven’t tried either yet, I’m going to wait until I’m back home with Husby. I’ll let ya’ll know when we try them.

Ya’ll I’m getting kinda sleepy and we are packin’ up and movie’ out early tomorrow morning. So I will just share some photos from today with brief descriptions and call it a night. I have a couple of post planned for later that about some of the things we did today. There’s just too much to cram into one post.

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Rain clouds over town.

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The aerial tram riding up the mountain into the rain.
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Driving back into town, hence back into the rain.
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The road into RMNP. Sorry for all the cloud photos, I just think it’s a lovely perspective.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAA micro shot I took during my hike.
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHummingbird right outside our room this afternoon.

Estes Park Day 2

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Yesterday was so much fun ya’ll. I didn’t write a post last night because I was so worn out. I don’t think I could have made complete sentences. Oh, wait my sentence structure is pretty bad on good days. However did I manage to pass English Comp I and II with a B?

Ya’ll don’t want to hear about my illustrious college career, ya’ll want to hear about vacation!

Yesterday was amazing. Estes Park has an aerial tram that I’ve always wanted to ride. In the past it’s always been closed for repairs, but this year it was open! The view of the town from the top is beautiful. You can see the tundra, the entrance to the national park, Lake Estes, and The Stanley.

For those who don’t know The Stanley is the hotel the movie The Shining was filmed at. It was built by Freelan Oscar Stanley of Stanley Steamers, the carpet cleaning company. It opened in 1909 on July 4th. If you’d like to read more about it, here’s the Wiki link: The Stanley

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA The Stanley from the mountain, all of the white buildings with the red roof are part of the hotel. Of course the building in the center is the main building. If you’re adventurous you can go on a tour of the hotel. Be advised, it’s a bit on the pricy side.

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The aerial tram on its way back up the mountain to come and get us.

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Just look at that view. I recommend that you take the ride if you ever come and visit.

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For more information about the tram you can visit this website: Estes Park Aerial Tramway

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Lake Estes

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASorry I had to include this one because I just love how the clouds look.

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This of course is the view of the tundra. I’ll have to share a different photo in a later post. My aunt couldn’t climb up to where I was standing, so I took a photo for her using her camera. ( I’m also a better photographer. ;) ) Anyway, right as I was about to take the photo for her, a Magpie landed on this broken tree. It’s a beautiful shot.

 

After riding the tram we went downtown to do some shopping. I bought a more practical hat, my white one kept trying to blow away.

photo%205-5My absolutely adorable hat that can’t stand the mountain winds.

photo%201-8My new, not so adorable hat. But ya’ll, that’s ok. This way I won’t lose it and I still get protection from the sun. I’ll take looking like a goober over a sunburn. ;)

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Fall River, I took this walking along the river walk in town. It’s not normally that high or moving that fast. They’re already worried that it might flood again come the September rains.


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I spotted this local artist during our walk. This is one of the things I love about this town.


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Another view of Fall River taken in town.

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Now I’ve always called this the reflection pool. If you’re out early in the morning before the sun has completely come over the mountains, this pool looks just like a mirror.
photo%205-6ANd ya’ll I just had to share this. I saw this amazing print in the stationery shop. It was a 10×14 matted piece. I absolutely loved it. However, after buying Husby’s gift, I couldn’t make myself spend the $50. Luckily I found a postcard version at a shop further down!

After shopping we made our way to the visitors center. Estes Park has free shuttles that drop you off at various locations around town. After a day spent walking and hiking, it’s a great way to get around. I also recommend if you’ve never been here before, be sure to ride all the loops. There are a total of five loops and are designated by color. All five stop at the visitors center where you can catch a connecting one. The Gold Loop is the trolley, which is the only one that stops downtown. Estes traffic is atrocious. Do not drive in it, use the shuttles. I could go on and on about the shuttle services. I think I’ll write another post over nothing but the service.

Well ya’ll, that’s it for now. It’s time to go get some breakfast and start are last day of vacation.

 

 

Estes Park, Co

We’ve arrived this morning at about 10. I can’t remember if I mentioned this, but we’ve been to Estes Park several times. I made the first trip here when I was sixteen. It snowed, in June, and Estes had won my heart forever. I personally try to come back every two years. This time I’ve made it back in less than a year!

We’re staying at Deer Crest, it’s an adult only hotel that we absolutely love. We’re stayed here several times before. If you ever make the trip up and don’t have munchkins, I definitely recommend staying here. You see and hear Fall River from your room. If you stay on the second floor you have a private front balcony was well as the social back balcony that faces the river. Ya’ll I’m not explaining this well. Here I’ll share the view I have while sitting here and typing this:

Photo on 7-10-14 at 6.05 PM Photo on 7-10-14 at 6.06 PM #2That’s a Hummingbird at the feeder in the upper right corner. I realize these aren’t the most flattering photos of me, but now I’ve made ya’ll jealous and shown off my new vacation shirt.

 

Now, back to the start of the day.

We left Limon, Co at 6am. I’m sure it’s a perfectly pleasant little town, but it just kind of depresses us so we wanted a super early start. We went up HW 71 and turned West and headed through Loveland and Big Thompson Canyon. Going through the canyon was really sad, the Big Thompson River jumped its banks last fall. There was so much destruction, my heart broke for all the families that were affected. But the people of Colorado, like all people of the West are a resilient lot and they were rebuilding.

I’d like to share some photos of today’s adventure. I apologize now for the poor quality of some of the photos, I used my phone. Like the goober I am, I left my actual camera in the trunk.

 

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Our first view of the Rockies. I think I took this in Ft Morgan, Co.

 

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About to head into Big Thompson Canyon.

 

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Ok I’m sorry this is my really cruddy photo of driving into the canyon. It in no way does it justice.

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This is the Big Thompson River.
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I don’t know if any of ya’ll remember the hat that I blogged about a year ago, but this is it. And that waterfall behind me is along Fall River in downtown Estes.

 

 

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Luck was on our side today. It’s the weekly farm market. I was so tempted to by these beautiful fresh sunflowers, but they’d’ve never made it home. :(

Well, that’s it for tonight. We did so much walking around that we’re going to go jump in the hot tub. I’ll think of ya’ll dear readers, as I sit in it and stare at the mountains and listen to the river.

Ya’ll have a good night, and blessed dreams. I’ll share more adventures tomorrow, there are plans in the works to ride the tram up the mountain and hike.

A Day Late

I know I slacked off last night and didn’t post about our first day of vacation. But ya’ll there wasn’t much to tell, we were in the car for 8 hours and it was hot. It took an hour to get out of the Oklahoma City metro area, but it did rain all the way to Woodward. Western Oklahoma and Kansas and Eastern Colorado are pretty boring until about 72 miles North of Limon.

Which is where we stayed for the night, Limon, Co. We’ve stopped to rest there before, my aunt can’t make the 12 hour car ride. Anyway, our hotel left a lot to be desired. Now ya’ll, I don’t like to give bad reviews, our hotel was just atrocious and terribly expensive. The only redeeming quality the place had was their incredibly comfortable pillows. But really that’s it, the promised indoor pool was tiny and terribly dirty.

I also told ya’ll that I’d share my daily outfits. And while my shirt was new and very dear to my heart as the proceeds go to MRKH. However, as previously stated, we were in a car for 8 hours. Therefore; it’s a bit tacky looking. But I’ll share it anyway. I think it was the only picture worth taking yesterday since the scenery was so boring. I mean I love my home state, but there’s nothing remotely interesting about corn and wheat fields, windmills, and cows.

Well ya’ll that’s about all the damage I can do for now. I’ll post a new entry later tonight about our first day in Estes Park, Co.

leaving 2014

Outdoor Building

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Oh my gracious, I got to go to one of my favorite type of stores today! A home improvement store, now I know what ya’ll are probably thinking, but I just love these stores. There are so many possibilities in them, and since we plan to build a new home in the next few years I like taking notes on products and fixtures I like. 

Now, like most people I have favorite departments that I have to go to no matter what each trip. For me these departments are flooring, the nursery, and while not strictly a department the book/magazine rack. 

Today we actually needed to go to the flooring department. We needed a package of those little spacer doodads for laying tile. Husby was finally able to repair my kitchen floor. We’ve had an 18 square foot area of exposed concrete for well over two years now. I’ll explain why in a later post. 

After grabbing the spacer doohickies and a plastic scraper Husby said would make his life easier, we headed over to the book rack. Now, Husby did not roll his eyes at this stop like he usually does. He’s been on a veritable hunt for a current building code book. Alas, no code book.

But I found two books that I just had to have. These did entice eye rolling, but that’s all part of the charm of our marriage, gratuitous eye rolling at each other.

I am little kid with a new toy excited about these books. The first one is The Complete Photo Guide to Outdoor Building from Black & Decker. The second is Southern Fruit & Vegetable Gardening

I have not started reading the Southern Fruit & Vegetable. I did however; start reading Outdoor Building. As a matter of fact I began reading it as soon as we got out to the truck. I cannot say enough about this book. I’ve made it through the first topic section and have learned so much. 

The book is broken up into seven different topics. The first being about how to plan your building project, including information on different tools and building materials, as well as how to estimate how much of each material you will need. I found this super helpful, especially the chart that breaks down the calculations. 

As the title suggests, they include photographed examples of most everything discussed in the chapters. They have also included several projects with plans and complete materials lists. With of course several photographs of the steps. I am especially interested in the different plans for greenhouses. 

I definitely recommend purchasing this book if you plan on doing any kind of outdoor building project. I bought my copy at Lowe’s for about $23. Because I love the book so much I wanted to share a link on where you could get a copy. Now I’m wishing I’d bought it from Amazon. ;)

The Complete Photo Guide to Outdoor Building

 

 

*This post is purely my thoughts and feelings about the book The Complete Photo Guide to Outdoor Building. I am not a Black & Decker employee or representative, nor did the company approach me to write this post. 

Doctor’s Office

I know I can’t be the only one who dislikes waiting at a doctor’s office. My biggest objection to waiting is the TVs. We rarely watch television at home because everything is so annoying.

You get to the office and you always go back at least ten minutes after you appointment time. And then you have to listen to talk shows. I can’t take talk shows.

I can’t wait until they call me back. I wonder if they will care if I turn the tv off.

Vacation Fashion

It’s time to get all pretty for vacation. I absolutely adore shopping and getting ready. This year I bought an entire new wardrobe for the week.

We leave tomorrow for Estes Park, Co and the Rocky Mountains. My plan is to share each day’s outfit and adventure with ya’ll.

So stay tuned and have a great week ya’ll.

Cravings

I will never be pregnant. I was born without a uterus do to this pesky genetic disorder known as MRKH. MRKH is a disorder that affects 1 in 5,000 women. So, it’s pretty rare. If you want to learn more about it you can check out this link: Beautiful You Foundation.

Anyway, I brought this up because it’s been kind of a rough day. I spent it fighting with the DMV. Let’s face it any time you have to deal with the DMV is a bad time. I have never met more rude or full of themselves people as those who work for the Department of Motor Vehicles. 

After a truly tiring and frustrating day I had a headache and was craving comfort junk food. Now, this is where the not ever going to be pregnant comes in. My wonderful husband went down to the local grocery store to buy me milk and Oreos. 

Husby could have made me suffer, I mean this wasn’t a hormone induced craving. Or he could have made me go get them myself. He did neither of these things and I am so thankful that he did go get me my snack. He takes care of me no matter what, and I love him so much for that. 

Now, I’m gonna go enjoy those Oreos. ;)

Head Down a State Highway

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When I was younger we used to take Saturday road trips. We’d end up about two to three hours from home. We’d always stop in a small town, of course there really isn’t any other kind of town in Oklahoma. It was always an adventure. Daddy hated the interstate, so we’d head down a state highway. We’d head North or South on HW 9 and then Daddy would decide to turn off and catch another of the numerous highways the criss cross this state.

Those highways always turn into Main Street of those little towns. And that’s the best part. All the little shops, the murals on the walls, an occasional museum, just waiting for you all shined up in their Sunday best, just begging you to stop. Oh the delicious food we ate. The beautiful trinkets that we came home with from those antique shops. And the people we met, there isn’t anyone friendlier than the folks in Oklahoma. I just loved to chatting with the shopkeepers.

They knew the best places to go and knew all the local legends. So many towns and outposts in Oklahoma had run ins with some of the most famous outlaws of the west. And of course, some of those outlaws were born and raise here. The shopkeepers would tell you just where to go for this or that landmark. Oh how I miss those Saturdays.

Of course both my parents are gone now, and I’m an adult, so no more Saturday family road trips. Still I can’t help but feel nostalgic for one though. I have this desire to hop in the car and just head out, see where to road takes me. Roll down the windows, let my hair down and feel the wind. I wanna find my self in some town I’ve never been to. I wanna browse the shops, get a coke float at an old fashioned drug store soda fountain, fill the trunk of my car with trinkets and forgotten treasures. Maybe even find a little clothing boutique that has a cute dress or scarf that I just can’t live without.

I can see it now, a two lane road, all the cars parked right out in front of the shops. They’ll have the big open windows and the walkways will be covered and supported by wooden posts. The buildings will be mostly wood, built over a hundred years ago and still standing. Who knows, I might even find a town where the historic district still has a boardwalk.

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